Home Office Renovating Tips
Coping with the Home Office When Renovating
Working from home has many great advantages, being able to sleep in a few extra minutes, make yourself a snack when you’re hungry, have a nap in the sun for a coffee break, saves on fuel costs, hang out your washing on a sunny day, work in your trackies and trainers, but all these advantages can be lost and a great deal more disadvantages added when you decide to renovate your house and still have to work in your home office, so here are some home office renovating tips to help you cope with what’s ahead.
The distractions are enormous.
As we have just gone through all this renovating ourselves and we work from home and had a new baby at the time, we have some tips on how to cope with living and working in your home when you have building contractors pulling your house and lifestyle apart.
Make life easier for your contractors by moving everything out of their way and store it in an enclosed space, preferably out of the building area. This way your precious possessions won’t get broken or covered in “building dust”. This dust seems to sneak into every little seam of the house.
Pack away most of your children’s toys. This doesn’t sound fair for the kids, but it is a lot easier than having crying children with their favorite toys damaged from leaving them under your builders feet! It is also a lot safer environment for them to work in if there aren’t obstacles for them to trip over.
Never plan to work while the contractors embark on major noisy jobs, ask them the night before what they will be doing the following day, this way you can sort out the best time for making phone calls and coordinate when to leave the house for lunch. Loud noise can build up and make you aggravated and very grumpy, especially if you are trying to concentrate.
A valuable item in your home is the flooring, this is often overlooked when renovations take place, so ensure you place protective coverings over your carpet or hard flooring. Even the most prudent workmen will still manage to drop things on the ground. Building dust can really scratch hardwood floors and get embedded into the carpet fibers and cause your carpet to wear prematurely, so make sure you keep it covered and taped down.
Take down the drapes and blinds from your windows, this way you can protect them as they are easily soiled or damaged by construction work and an expensive item to replace.
Remove your pictures and paintings from the walls.Contractors often travel blindly carry timber and plasterboard sheet through your home which can easily disrupt your posessions. Another subtle variation to this is the vibrations from a hammer on the neighbouring wall making the artwork fall from the wall.
Make an effort to vacuum the whole house every night. It sounds like a lot of work but it is well worth the time envolved. Work the area thoroughly around the construction site and quickly for the remaining areas of the house and this reduces any long term damage to your home and your health. Dust can engulf your entire house, by eliminating as much as you can on a daily basis, when the work is complete the dust will have less impact on your living areas. The dust remains in the air and will settle over a few months, so getting as much away as possible before it gets airborne is a positive step to reducing this problem.
Before the contractor starts work in your home inform them that your home is a family home including children and / or pets and they all have different needs that have to be considered. That prepares them for the environment that they will be working in and ensures that they are aware of leaving doors or gates open, and this then reduce the risk of you losing something precious.
Make sure you set yourself achievable work goals each day. Remember that there will be constant noise, which does upsets your concentration, the contractors will be asking questions and taking breaks and wanting to use your facilities. The mental stress of renovating will make you feel more tired and the house will feel in a constant state of disarray.
Achieve what you can while the contractors are working during the day and once they have left you can attempt some extra work at night to keep up your work load, remembering that this is only a temporary situation.
Don’t even think about setting up meetings with clients in your home office. You won’t be able to be professional with the renovations happening around you so make the most of it and book in your meeting at a local cafe.
Taking care of your contractors with a little sweetening up of tea, coffee and occasionally some cake or muffins is a good way of making them respect your home and the fact that you want them to feel welcome to stay and finish the job. Don’t get too engaged though as often like to sit around and chat, remember who is paying for that chat.
It is vitally important that you have an agreed date that the project needs to be completed by. This ensures that the work will get done as soon as possible, reducing the amount of disruption in your home and office. If not you could find your home office world upside down until the contractor decides he is ready to finish your job. This costs your sanity and money as you cannot fulfill your simple daily work tasks.
Create one “sane” place to go in your home through the renovating process. An untouched area in your home. This will be your escape space! When you feel you can’t cope with the mess any longer you can go to this place and regain some sanity.
Last but not least, enjoy the finished home and office renovations, your sacrifices have paid off and you’ve certainly earned it!
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